Since the dawn of time, women have had one sole reason to exist: the knowledge that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife. Right? Weddings? Without them, ladies become Hoarders episodes waiting to happen, subsisting on ice cream and cat pictures?
Sarcasm and the writer's own latent fears of commitment aside, a wedding isn't just about a special day — it's about an entire industry. Anyone who has spent a modicum of time on sites like Pinterest or Instagram can recognize that the pressure to create picture-perfect (and Pin-perfect) ceremonies would drive anyone to Bridezilla-dom. And, according to The New York Times, single ladies want in on the celebration, too.
After speaking with publications like The Knot and and WeddingBee, The Times discovered that a lot of the women who are interested in wedding-related content are, in fact, single. In fact, says the article, 40 percent of the women who frequent TheKnot.com, which is intended for brides, aren't engaged. The article offers a couple of anecdotes of women, like Pamela Prindle, who "spends 'a good portion of her day' on her Pinterest board titled 'I’m single but still planning my wedding.'" There are pros, like knowing what you want when you do get engaged, says The Times, but there are also cons, like being unbending in your choices with potential partners. But, the bottom lines remains: Unengaged women out there are, inarguably, interested in weddings.
And to that, we say a big fat "No duh." As soon as we pass prom age, the majority of ladies who live in America are overwhelmed with images of sparkling solitaires, princess dresses, and "dream days" to aspire to, so it's hardly any wonder that unattached gals swoon over pictures of floral wreaths. Because, as Andrea Grimes writes for XOJane, "The designer dress, the cover band, the diamond ring? It’s all an elaborate plot devised by some people who want to sell you some s**t so you fit in with your peer group. Yes, weddings can be super fun and awesome, cover bands and designer dresses and all; they are also an industry." And a lucrative industry, at that: The average wedding in 2012 cost $27,201. No wonder there are blogs, mags, shows, movies, and commercials all across everywhere, tempting us to get hitched — or at least dream about it.
As for single women Pinning and planning for weddings? Well, we Pin futuristic, gorgeous, and totally impractical things all day, simply because we like to look at them. Having a mood board for a day we have been told to dream of since the dawn of time doesn't feel weird or problematic. Yet, the attitude of NYT interviewee Pamela Prindle, is a little trickier. Writes The Times, "Ms. Prindle, for example, said that if she met someone she wanted to marry, she doesn’t think his input would matter. 'I figure, this is what it’s going to be,' she said." Hmm, not exactly our picture of partnership.
Being excited about your wedding, be you attached or not, is a classic (and understandable) feeling. A single gal who creates a couple of mood boards on Pinterest or contributes to a wedding blog isn't a case of "single ladies going wedding crazy," or some
manufactured new trend. It's actually just a natural reaction to the times we live in, since the wedding industry has been targeting us ladies for ages. But, being obsessive over getting your Pinterest-inspired wedding just right before (or during) your engagement is a whole heap of unnecessary stress — the idea that a day symbolizing a union becomes strictly about exercising control-freak tendencies bums us out in a big way. And that's hardly limited to single-girl wedding planners.
Photo: Courtesy of J. Crew